Law Schools

ABA looking for ways to better monitor employment stats for law graduates

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As part of the process of implementing new standards for law schools to report employment data about their graduates, the American Bar Association is seeking bids for what the National Law Journal calls a law school data cop.

A request for prosposals (PDF) circulated by the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar asks for bids to be submitted by March. 15.

The ABA’s new employment data standards for law schools were implemented after several law schools announced that incorrect admission or employment information had been provided to third parties—including but not limited to the ABA—and took corrective measures, as the National Law Journal notes. At this point, however, it isn’t clear how and to what extent the information submitted to the ABA in the future should be checked, explains Barry Currier, who serves as the ABA’s interim consultant on legal education.

“We want to know, if we wanted to audit a school’s employment data or force schools to give us an audit, how would you do that? What would it look like?” he said. “Maybe we would look at how law schools go about collecting their employment data, but we’re not really sure right now how that would be done.”

Last year, the ABA fined the University of Illinois $250,000 for intentionally reporting and publishing false admissions data in six out of the last 10 years. That money will help pay for any initiative developed from the proposal request, the National Law Journal reported.

Related coverage:

ABA Journal: “Double Fast Track: ABA Drafts Tougher Reporting Requirements for Law Schools” “ABA Legal Education Section, LSAC to Certify Admissions Data About Entering Law Classes” “No Fudging: Revised Standard Bars Law Schools from Publishing Misleading Consumer Info” “How widespread is issue of misreporting admissions data to US News?”

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